A child who is being bullied will go to an adult. It's what they're taught from the moment they start school. If somebody makes them feel scared, hurt or "bad" in anyway, they're supposed to tell a teacher. Yes, as they get older, being a tattletale starts to be "so not cool" in school social circles. Nobody wants to be the whiner who runs to the teacher every time somebody says something mean to them. I know. I was like that too.
Until the bullying got so bad that I didn't know how to handle it alone. My first experiences with true, hurtful bullying(not just boys teasing girls because "ew, girls!") came at the same time I moved to a new school with a new teacher who turned out to be a bully herself. I got in trouble for everything, the bully kids never did. She made sure my own behavior issues were exacerbated by denying me access to the medication I still take today to manage hyperactivity--and she did this to ensure she could treat me like the bad kid. I wasn't a bad kid on purpose. I couldn't control my behavior like I can now. Had I known then what I know now, I would've had my parents report her to the police! The things she let other kids get away with while bullying me should be illegal. My parents were at the school constantly, and no help was given. It was always ME in trouble, never the kids who were harassing, threatening and hurting me.
Later on, in junior high and high school, I was always told to just ignore the kids. Once, girls threw an entire salad over me in a manner similar to the bucket of blood on Carrie White in Carrie--albeit the results weren't quite as bad. My brand new dress was completely and irreparably ruined by the dressing and my hair smelled like Ranch for the rest of the day. This happened in front of a large portion of the student body. No one offered to help. They all laughed, and I had to push through laughing kids with dressing on me to get to the office. I wasn't allowed to go home, so my mom was forced to bring me a change of clothes and she helped me clean my hair out the best we could without shampoo. I had very long hair(still do!), so you can imagine what a mess it was! The worst thing? Overhearing the counselors, the principal and vice principal talking in the next room. They said the people who did it weren't going to come forward and they couldn't punish the whole school over a salad, so maybe it was a better idea to just "tell her to let it go." No one got reprimanded for ruining an expensive dress or humiliating me in front of my peers.
I begged my mom not to tell my dad about the salad incident because he always got mad at ME when major things happened at school. I did gripe about kids being mean, which led to my dad asking me what I did to make other kids want to tease me. Guess what? I stopped reporting it because the combination of the highest school authority figures and my own father making me feel like I somehow deserved it made me believe reporting the bullying was useless.
I suffered in silence because no authority figures took my situation seriously.
Do you know what happens to children who grow up believing that? They run the risk of believing they'll never be helped. What if you have a daughter who gets raped? She might not report it because authority figures never helped before, why should they now? This could be true for muggings, assault, robbery and so forth.
Don't let your child grow up believing that. If the school your child goes to is dragging its feet in a bullying situation, I recommend you go to the police yourself.